Colors are a natural part of every single person’s life in one way or another. The sky is blue and the grass is green this is pretty much just common knowledge. Everything has some type of color whether it is pitch black or clear there is always a descriptive color. A large number of these colors that flourish in this world are also used for other purposes. This is because colors lend themselves to being diverse, colors are quite fickle. Just as Josef Albers said,
“If one says “red” (the name of a color) and there are 50
people listening, it can be expected that there will be 50
reds n their minds. And one can be sure that all these
reds will be very different.”
. One of the most emotional parts of seeing is color. When someone sees a color it almost instantly stirs up some type of feeling and becomes correlated with whatever is happening as well as past events or feelings. The color red for example is often used to express love but can also invoke anger. Blue is a color that people tend to trust, which is why many store use it in their employees uniforms, although it can also make one feel cold physically or sad. Colors are also sometimes used to express feelings, again blue can be used in this way and it means that someone is not feeling happy. Another example would be green, as in, he was green with envy, everyone knows that this person was not really green but it helps to express the extent of envy. Literature is another place were colors are used to set a mood, which helps the reader experience the work more in depth. Colors can change moods and feelings in real life as well. While all of this is true in one manner or another, colors do not have one solid definition they are merely understood to be or mean something. Most people do respond, however, in the same general manner to the different sides of the color wheel. The colors green and violet and all the ones in between the two are noted as cool, and the colors from yellow to red are said to be warm.
While all colors stand out in their own nature, some tend to be much more noticeable then others. When a color is brighter people seem to notice it more often. Yellow is perhaps one of the most common of these bright colors. Once again demonstrating the uniqueness of colors the simplified definition in the dictionary is; the color of an egg yolk or that of a lemon. It gives the impression of being almost indefinable without going into tricky scientific processes. For example yellow is said to be the part of the spectrum that is between orange and green that lies at around 570 to 590 nanometers on the wavelength. Many people do not have the ability to fully comprehend this kind of definition because it requires more knowledge than just yellow.
Being that yellow is so common place one might think that it would be easy to ignore, however, because it is so bright this is nearly impossible to do. A good way to explain this would be by using the words of professor Gordon Ligocki (Art teacher) he says, “The color yellow is like loud rock and roll music you just can not ignore it.” This is why so many road signs and warning labels are yellow, so people are sure to notice them. It is for the same reason that school buses are required to be yellow because it makes them hard to miss. This concept is also employed in nature. For example bees, which everyone knows sting, are yellow. In addition to cautioning of danger this natural warning system is used to ward off potential predators.
Though it is a good attention getter yellow is also one of the most straining colors on the eye. This is because it reflects so much light. In very extreme cases looking at the color for extended periods of time can lead to vision loss. The color yellow has also been said to provoke anger as well as feelings of aggravation. This could be why individuals tend to become enraged when they are in a room surrounded by yellow. This also serves as an explanation as to why babies are thought to cry more when they are in yellow rooms. However this correlation between yellow and anger may be due to the fact that it boosts an individual’s breathing rate, heartbeat, and blood pressure. Yellow has also been found to have the ability to perk up a person’s metabolism. Most people refuse to believe that yellow is an anger invoking color And Wolfgang von Goethe expressed this when he said,
“Experience teaches us that yellow makes a thoroughly warm and comforting impression. With yellow the eye rejoices, the heart expands, the sprit is cheered and we immediately feel warmed. Many people feel an inclination to laugh when looking through a yellow glass.”
Yellow is a naturally occurring color, as mentioned in the definition it is the color of lemons, as well as, the sun, some vegetables and even the changing autumn leaves. Although yellow is located on the warm side of the color wheel, and is often associated with warmth because of the sun it has several mixed meanings. However, the sun is the most universal meaning, even young children prove this when coloring. The object that is most depicted with the yellow crayon is the sun. Vincent Van Gough felt that it represented the sun fully when he said “how wonderful the color yellow is, it stands for the sun”. Cheerfulness is a very common meaning because yellow is thought to make people happy. On the other hand, if someone is said to be yellow this person is usually being called a coward, or Asian it all depends on the circumstances, this of course is the word in slang terms.
Despite its’ obviously happy traits there have been several unpleasant stigmas attached to the color yellow. Jaundice is a condition that makes the skin and the whites of the eyes appear yellow. Because of this since the medieval times ships that are quarantined have put up yellow flags as a warning sign to others. In medieval times the person who was basically the village idiot was usually represented by wearing yellow. In France in the tenth century the doors on the homes of criminals and traitors were painted yellow. Now, however, a yellow front door is seen as warm and inviting. Having an entire house painted yellow makes it seem extremely welcoming. Yellow can also be used to paint a small space in order to create the illusion of a bigger area. This is true for most light colors. Yellow fever is another thing as well as most sickness is another thing that thinking of yellow as unfavorable
Yellow ribbons are used as a sign of hope for people with loved ones in the armed forces. There was even a song written about this in the nineteen sixties which went, “tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree it’s been three long years do you still want me.” Of course there are also other songs with yellow in them and the meanings all vary in their own way. There was also a song by Donovan called mellow yellow. This song was thought to be tied to the rumor that banana peels could be used as a drug. While no one really knows if this is true, it is true that the yellow spice saffron is very capable of causing an altered state of mind.
As with all colors yellow has several different shades. The most common shades of yellow are the ones that occur naturally and the ones that are related to food. Some good examples of this would be banana, cream, daffodil, and lemon. Gold happens to be one of the many shades of yellow. In fact the word yellow comes from the Indo-European word ghelwo, which translated means related to gold or gleam. Gold has been represented as a symbol of gods as well as high social or economical status. Shades of yellow are still commonly used today in some places to symbolize royalty or wealth. The statue that Buddha followers still worship is also gold. Gold as most people is know also one of the most precious metals.
There are people who believe that every single living being has an aura. An aura is a sort of shield of colored light that surrounds the body. When a persons’ aura is yellow they are said to have a very intellectual mind. These people also tend to be quite spontaneous.
People whose favorite color is yellow tend to, not surprisingly, be happy individuals. These people are also usually active for the most part. Wassily Kandinsky spoke of this activity of yellow in his book, The Art of Spiritual Harmony, when he said,
“Yellow tends so greatly toward lightness (white), that there ca be no such thing as very dark yellow. If one looks at a circle filled with yellow, one notices that the yellow radiates, a motion comes from the center and approaches us almost visibly … the first motion of yellow, the striving toward the person, which can be intensified to the point of obtrusiveness … and also the second motion of yellow, the leap across the boarder, the dispersal of energy in the environment … streaming out aimlessly on all sides.”
Some other personality traits of yellow lovers are that they imaginative and spiritual. These people are usually very good friends as well. People who do not like the color yellow are not necessarily dark or pessimistic. These are the people who live on the real side of life. For this particular individual change is not something that is welcomed.
When someone thinks of a color, usually the color is immediately related to something nearby, or to a feeling that holds personal meaning for that precise color. Most of the time, however, the color is simply the color and nothing more. Orange is just orange, for example, it is not a mixture of reds and yellows or a color to offset blue. Although it is hard to imagine a world without color, having it means that everyone must put up with all of these complicated things that tie together to make each color its’ own. When an artist paints a picture it is usually done with the intent that a certain message will be portrayed when it is finished. If the artist did not have color this would be a great deal harder to accomplish. Moreover, life would be extremely boring if everything was black and white. This is why people should be thankful that there is plenty of color to go around, even if it is complicated sometimes. After all how could anything be fully described or experienced without color.